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Showing posts from July, 2004

Office Space

How important is the physical workspace to knowledge workers generally,and software developers specifically?  Everybody agrees it'simportant.  Talk to ten people, though, and you'll get nine differentopinions about what aspects are important and how muchthey impact effectiveness.  But there are some classic studies thatshed some light on the subject; looking around recently, they haven'tbeen refuted.  At the same time, a lot of people in the softwareindustry don't seem to have heard of them.

Take the amount and kind of workspace provided to each knowledgeworker.  You can quantify this (number of square feet,open/cubicle/office options).  What effects should you expect from,say, changing the number of square feet per person from 80 to 64?  Whatwould this do to your current project's effort and schedule?

There's no plug-in formula for this, but based on the available data,I'd guesstimate that the effort would expand by up to 30%.  Why?

"Programmer Performan…

Community, social networks, and technology at Supernova 2004

Some afterthoughtsfrom the Supernova conference, specifically about social networks andcommunity.  Though it's difficult to separate the different topics. 

A quick meta-note here: Supernova is itself a social network of peopleand ideas, specifically about technology -- more akin to a scientificconference than an industry conference.  And, it's making a lot of useof various social tools: http://www.socialtext.net/supernova/,http://supernova.typepad.com/moblog/.

Decentralized Work (Thomas Malone) soundsgood, but I think there are powerful entrenched stakeholders that canwork against or reverse this trend (just because it would be gooddoesn't mean it will happen).  I'm taking a look at The Future of Work right now; one first inchoate thought is how some of the same themes are treated differently in The Innovator's Solution.

The Network is People - a panel with Chrisopher Allen, Esther Dyson, Ray Ozzie, and Mena Trott.  Interesting/new thoughts:
Chris Allen on spreadsheet…